The Skye Boat Song - Slow Air

For this bagpipe lesson Pipe Major Bill Robertson explains playing the tune The Skye Boat Song. Bill breaks the lesson down into sections with commentary for each section.

Listen to Bill's Audio Instruction
The Skye Boat Song - Slow Air

Download the Music Notation for The Skye Boat Song

Click to download the tune notation for The Skye Boat Song

Lesson Pointers for The Skye Boat Song

Play at about 48 beats per minute. Some of the embellishments have been changed slightly to suit the beginner piper.

Additional Information

The Skye Boat Song is derived from the song which was partly an old sea shanty with the addition of the second part attributed to Annie MacLeod about 1884. The romantic song commemorates the departure of Bonnie Prince Charlie, after his defeat by the Government forces 1746, from the Scottish mainland by boat to the Isle of Skye and hence to exile in France.

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